An Active Approach to Media: Three Tips for Writing the Perfect Pitch
Director, Communication & External Relations at ConAgra Foods
In the world of social, traditional media is still a powerful asset in your RD toolbox. Many retail dietitians regularly lend their expertise to magazines, newspapers and local TV stations where there’s still the need for trusted sources of nutrition information. In return, a well-placed media segment can become a new marketing tool for your store, as you generate consumer buzz about new products and nutrition, which can lead to increased store traffic. See below for three tips for drafting a strong pitch that can land media spots so you’re well on your way to becoming a well-known spokesperson in your community.
1. Keep it Relevant
- Know who you are pitching. Read the magazine. Watch the show. Research the writers and the topics they cover. Understanding your target will help you individualize the pitch.
- Stay up-to-date on current food trends. Sign up for food and nutrition news feeds so you know when new information is released.
- Timing is key to a successful pitch:
- Pitch with seasonal angles in mind. Stories that are unique to the time of year seem fresh and speak to the viewer’s concerns and interests.
- For magazines, request editorial calendars and develop your ideas around their themes. Most offer their calendars online for free.
- If you are pitching a TV program, keep the time of day in mind. Producers are busy during the hours leading up to the show. Call at least three hours before it airs.
2. Market Yourself
- As a retail dietitian you have unique experience interacting with customers and you are skilled at speaking to shoppers. Market yourself not only as a nutrition expert but a consumer specialist.
- When crafting the pitch, include your credentials and position in the retail industry. Saying “_____ ______, RD and retail dietitian for _______” helps solidify your expertise. Describe your background and why you are the best dietitian for the segment.
- Offer assets that will add to the segment/article. These could include high-resolution images, brand logos, product samples, cooking demonstrations or headshots.
3. Offer Ready-To-Use Sound Bites
- A great way to get media coverage is to offer insights on emerging research. The ability to translate complex study findings into quick and easy to understand messages is critical. Here are a few examples of sound bites:
- Foods with more volume and protein often help keep you fuller longer, which can be an effective way to maintain weight. 
- More filling and satisfying than regular potato chips, low fat popcorn helps individuals eat less, according to recent research. 
- A recent study found that, calorie-for-calorie, egg whites are more filling and satisfying than whole eggs and are a smart choice for those who are trying to eat fewer calories. 
1. Kristin J. Reimers, Michael C. Meyer, Tabra Ward, Mark B. An egg white breakfast is more satiating than an equal calorie whole egg breakfast. J Acad Nutr Diet (2013): 113(9): A35.
2. Kristin J. Reimers, Tabra Ward, Michael C. Meyer. Fewer calories consumed when eating popcorn vs potato chips while watching TV. J Acad Nutr Diet (2013): 113(9): A34.